|"I can fix anything! If this dang thing holds together..."|
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|A StarCrafts Carol|
|Season 3, Episode 17|
|Air date||December 13, 2014|
The episode starts with an overview of the united three races to celebrate StarCrafts holiday. At a golden house, two marines, a marauder, hydralisk and viper sing carols at the front door. Inside the house, Zeratul overhears the caroling, getting annoyed. He cloaks himself and attacks the hydralisk and a marine, scaring the others away. He kicks the slain marine's helmet, which is neglectfully eaten by a viper. He slams the door in anger.
As he sleeps, Zeratul is awakened by the ghost of Tassadar calling to him. Tassadar identifies himself, but Zeratul is suspicious, thinking that this is one of Kerrigan's schemes, so Tassadar corrects him by retelling his name. Tassadar scolds him for doing many BM acts while playing StarCraft II, such as trolling, taunting, premature GG's, rage quitting, and saying dead game. Tassadar teaches him about the "True Meaning of StarCraft" by sending him to the past.
In the past, Tassadar tells Zeratul to remember that they used to play Brood War for fun in hours, but Zeratul says, "no." He presents him three classic units; a dragoon, a firebat and a lurker, demonstrating that the players were playing joyfully, until a reaver kills all three of them with one scarab. Tassadar, seeing the massive imbalance in gameplay, decides to take Zeratul to the present.
Back to StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm era, Tassadar asks Zeratul what he sees. Zeratul responds with "An abomination". Tassadar looks to see the endless locust battle from "ZvZ". Tassadar finds Tiny Tim, a locust, and tells Zeratul that Tiny Tim is about to timeout (an ending duration of swarm host's locust attack), meaning Tiny Tim is popped out of existence. He also shows the gameplay of StarCraft II where three races are battling each other in multiplayer game, and he illustrates a presentation of pie chart about the perfect balance of the game (Each one is 50 percent though there are three races and results in a sum of 150 percent). Zeratul interrupts him, saying "As if your word held any value." Tassadar then shows him one last thing for he convince him to come back, by sending him to the future.
In a white space, Zeratul opens his eyes, and looks at five out of six new units for the upcoming game expansion, the two zerg units lurker (as returning unit) and ravager, protoss disruptor, and terran cyclone and HERC. However, Zeratul states it is an ill news, and Tassadar is surprised. He points at the disruptor as an irrelevant unit, the lurker and ravager as wretched creatures, and cyclone and HERC as hated ones. Tassadar protests him that the new game is just an alpha, and even the creators have named the new mode after both of them, the Archon Mode (due to the fact that high templar and dark templar like them can become an archon). But Zeratul scornfully commands him to leave the world, and asserts him that he is not welcomed among the game. While he is fading away, Tassadar pleads him that the game is better than ever and begs him to come back, which makes Zeratul cry.
Awakened from the dream he experienced, Zeratul has been changed by the epiphany. He shows himself out of his house at the playing units of three races. Now a generous and heartfelt prelate, he happily greets the ravager and HERC. He nudges the disruptor as a new "brother". Later, he sets up his StarCrafts dinner with invited guests. He raises his toast with his speech of his gratitude for Tassadar, while the viper snatches HERC's turkey leg. Interrupting his speech, an uninvited swarm host enters from the door. He seemingly stares him with his tense eyes, but he bows as he lets him join the feast honorably. His welcoming makes everyone applause. Tiny Tim the locust flies from the swarm host, and Zeratul catches and adores him warmly, stating that he had misjudged him.
Before the circular ending transition, Tiny Tim flies up and remarks, "Blizzard, buff us everyone," and winks. The Christmas card shows the celebrating units and Zeratul playing with Tiny Tim.
- Zeratul (debut)
- Tassadar (debut)
- Dragoon (debut)
- Lurker (debut)
- Reaver (debut)
- Tiny Tim (debut)
- Overlords (cameo)
- Overseers (cameo)
- High templar (cameo)
- MULEs (cameo)
- Ultralisk (cameo)
- Ravager (debut)
- Disruptor (debut)
- Cyclone (debut, cameo)
- HERC (debut)
- Zerglings (cameo)
- Baneling (cameo)
- Derpfestor (cameo)
- Immortal (cameo)
- Archon (cameo)
- Ghost (cameo)
- Grinchlot (cameo)
- Green Probe (cameo)
- Wraith pilot (cameo)
- Battlecruiser admiral(cameo)
- Swarm host
- Widow mine (cameo)
The transcript for this episode can be found here.
- This is the third Christmas-special episode of season 3 in the series, preceding "The Twelve Days of StarCrafts" in season 2 and "The True Meaning of StarCraft" in season 1.
- The background of StarCrafts town at the beginning of the episode is reused from "The True Meaning of StarCraft."
- Jonathan Burton provided the voice of Tassadar in this episode. It marks the second episode with Burton's voice acting after "The True Meaning of StarCraft" where he voices the narrator.
- Tassadar teaching Zeratul about the true meaning of StarCraft is related to what the Green zealot had learned in "The True Meaning of StarCraft."
- In the scene where Zeratul is sleeping, a marine and hydralisk head trophies are shown on both sides of the fireplace. Both are when Zeratul had slain two units in caroling scene.
- Derpfestor is also shown as floormat.
- An object behind Zeratul on the bed is dark shrine, a building prerequisite for warping in dark templars from gateways in StarCraft II.
- In the scene where Zeratul wakes up, a lamp on the end table is shaped as a pylon.
- This episode features four dropped units from original StarCraft games, the lurker, firebat, dragoon and reaver.
- Scene of endless stalemate locusts and group of overlords and overseers is reused from the episode, "ZvZ."
- Spitting red hydralisks (and one of them waves at the viewers) is reused from "Carrier Career."
- Mothership crush landing on high templar is also reused from "It's Nerfing Time."
- Tassadar's pie chart is based on the balance of three races on StarCraft II. This chart can be refered here.
- On the contrary, winrate of three races with 50% each is not likely true since there are still different winrates in this ongoing report.
- As of the end of June 2015 summary, three matches have almost been balanced. PvT rates 50.38% in 1314 games, PvZ rates 50% in 1654 games, and TvZ rates 49.50% in 1388 games.
- On the contrary, winrate of three races with 50% each is not likely true since there are still different winrates in this ongoing report.
- David Kim and Dustin Browder made their cameo appearance drawn on Tassadar's pie chart illustration. Both of them were first appeared on "It's Nerfing Time" special episode.
- Tassadar explains that the game is just alpha, meaning that Legacy of the Void has an unofficial fan alpha mod with experimental new units and upgrades.
- Also, he adds that the new mode is called "Archon Mode." This mode is featured in Legacy of the Void beta.
- When Zeratul opens the door, an open-door sound effect from another Blizzard game "Diablo II" is heard.
- When Zeratul nudges the disruptor, its physical form is transformed into energy.
- This episode features the return of various characters and animations from older Christmas-themed episodes:
- "The True Meaning of StarCraft" two zerglings chasing a baneling, marine playing with hydralisk a ball around the sensor tower decorated as Christmas tree, marauder playing with immortal a catch, archon snowballing with ghost, and a snowman shaped like queen. Also, the reappearance of Green zealot and probe.
- "The Twelve Days of StarCrafts": queen decorating a hatchery, marine trio drinking eggnog, wearing a facial box, and stim can, pine tree with baneling balls, happy star and supply depot gifts, candy canes, wraith pilot and battlecruiser captain.
- Derpfestor is shown behind other units, but he appears to be purple although he is currently red.
In-Game References Edit
- In the future scene, there are new Legacy of the Void units to be added in StarCraft II, such as lurker, ravager, disruptor, cyclone and HERC. However, protoss adept does not appear.
- However, HERC has been cancelled during the LotV production. Instead, liberator has been added.
- Tiny Tim the locust has insect wings for some reason (because it is in fact a "flying locust" which is added as new ability for swarm hosts in Legacy of the Void expansion, replacing "enduring locust" ability.)
- Also, Tiny Tim did not explode on Zeratul's hand under time limit.
- Some Zeratul's quotes are reused from original StarCraft and Brood War. They are all voiced by Jack Ritschel:
- "What?" - "The Quest for Uraj" mission briefing, cutting the rest of speech.
- "What is going on here?" - "Dark Origin" in-game mission when witnessing zergling in the cyro-hibernation cell.
- "By the gods, this can't be happening"' '- "Dark Origin" in-game mission after adjuntant's description on zergling's cell.
- "What? Who are you?" - "Dark Origin" in-game mission when encountering Duran.
- "Kerrigan...is this part of her twisted schemes?" - "Dark Origin" in-game mission when talking to Duran, cutting "consort".
- "No." - "Dark Origin" in-game mission when adjuntant explains the zerg/protoss hybrid in cell.
- "...an Abomination" - "Dark Origin" in-game mission when realizing Duran's experimental Hybrids' history and uprising, cutting "All I behold is..."
- "As if your word held any value" - "To Slay the Beast" mission briefing.
- "By the gods, this is ill news indeed!" - "The Insurgent" mission briefing.
- "What makes you think we would have anything to do with you?" - "Legacy of the Xel'naga" mission ending.
- "Wretched creature!" - "The Insurgent" mission ending.
- "Damn you terrans!" - ("Damn You...") "The Reckoning" mission ending. ("...terrans") "Dark Origin" in-game mission.
- "You had no right to interfere! Begone from this world! You are no longer welcome among us!" - "The Insurgent" mission ending when leaving Infested Kerrigan.
- "Ah, it is good to see more of our brethren..." - "Escape from Auir" in-game mission when meeting survived protoss units, cutting "...on the battlefield".
- "Greetings to you mighty Tassadar. I knew that you would not forsake us. For in the time that you have spent with us, you have learned to value our ways and our methods. You have lear-" - "Into the Darkness" mission ending, cutting the rest of speech during his freedom thanks to Tassadar as high templar.
- "We would be honored if you join us." - "Escape from Auir" mission briefing when Jim Raynor joins the protoss' exodus.
- "There is more to you than it seems. Perhaps I have misjudged you." - "The Quest for Uraj" mission ending.
- "My Friends." - "Dark Origin" secret mission briefing.
- However, few are never shown on the games. In StarCraft II, Zeratul's voice and tone are different, voiced by Fred Tatasciore, due to the alleged death of Jack Ritschel. These are voiced by Burton himself:
- "Bah! Humbug!"
- "I must be getting old."
Cultural References Edit
- This episode is adapted from A Christmas Carol written by Charles Dickens. It providesmetaphor to the characters from the short novel, such as Zeratul as Ebenezer Scrooge, Tassadar as the ghost of Jacob Marley, Tiny Tim the locust as himself, and swarm host as Bob Cratchit.
- Zeratul wears top hat and scarf, resembling Ebenezer Scrooge's as a typical outfit.
- There are several similarities between this episode and A Christmas Carol:
- StarCraft: Brood War is a reference as Christmas past, Starcraft II: Heart of the Swarm as Christmas present, and StarCraft II: Legacy of the Void as Christmas yet to come.
- Zeratul's rage (a particular raging gamer) among the StarCrafts carolers (inviting players in battle.net) is similar to Scrooge's hatred and magnanimity on Christmas and its celebrants.
- Tassadar's observation on Zeratul's negativity among StarCraft II community is similar to what Marley's ghost judging Scrooge's selfishness, greed and misery that treats everyone in a sour note.
- Tassadar's long hair is a reference to Bob Marley's heavy chains as an eternal punishment for being avaricious. This similarity may likely be because of Tassadar's conflict with the Conclave on Auir due to his refusal on killing terrans and their world under Conclave's order, so he instead saved them from zerg invasion. This resulted the Protoss Civil War and the Conclave arrested him.
- In StarCraft: Brood War time, Tassadar reminding Zeratul that he was playing with the players for fun, and in A Christmas Carol, the scene shows Scrooge's joy and lonesome childhood in the Christmas past.
- The scene where Tassadar saying "Tiny Tim's about to time out" and Tiny Tim locust bursting is similar to Tiny Tim in A Christmas Carol dying from illness prior to the events of future Christmas Day.
- The scene where three races battling each other that Tassadar mentions that players who have chosen the race are playing for fun is similar to the scene where The Ghost of Christmas Present shows Scrooge the shopping spree of people in joy-filled market for Christmas feast.
- Tiny Tim saying, "Blizzard, buff us everyone" is a parody to the famous quote, "God, bless us everyone" said by Tiny Tim in the book.
- However, there are few differences:
- Two persons under the pie chart, David Kim and Dustin Browder, may be (but not necessarily similarly) a reference to Ignorance and Want, two ravenous, abandoned children of the poor.
- Three spirits of Christmas times excluding Marley's appear in the book, but in this episode, Tassadar is himself the spirit for three eras.
- The future that Tassadar mentions is where, in the Second Great War, Tassadar warns Zeratul that he and the protoss race will be overwhelmed under zerg swarm controlled by the Dark Voice (Amon) and the hybrids if Kerrigan had been killed (His rage on Kerrigan was because of her betrayal in using him and Nezarim to destroy the Second Overmind to make Razaghal return. He was however refused by Razaghal under Kerrigan's control). This is unlikely similar to Scrooge's fate in the Christmas Yet to Come where the death of "wretched man" is revealed to be himself on his unlamented grave if everything had never been altered.
- While Tassadar drags Zeratul to the future, the river is shaped like North and South America.
- When Tassadar identifies himself, Zeratul's eyes become blue, but before leaving the scene, his eyes are green again.
- Zeratul's hands change throughout the episode, his warp blade switch sides, and both become regular hands.